Jake Arrieta lost all control, Cubs nation held their collective breath. Turns out it’s just a blister on his finger and he’ll be fine. Things like this happen, it’s true, but it doesn’t mean you ever get used to it. Everybody starts thinking, what will the Cubs do if Jake is out? And that’s a valid question that may need to get answered at some point. Fortunately, we don’t have to face it today.
Jake says he’ll be fine and should be able to throw a bullpen in two days. Here’s a video of the dugout interview he had with Buster Olney during the game:
I know that spring training games can be, well, dull, especially to a national TV audience. I suppose that’s why the ESPN announcers gave so much coverage when Heyward was trying to communicate with Fowler to find out if the Bumgarner pitch was a strike or not. I had to watch the game on delay and saw all the activity on Twitter before I watched it, and based on what I read I really thought it was going to be a much bigger deal than it was. It was interesting to see the reaction before actually seeing it happen. Just goes to show the impact of speculation without all the facts (Jorge Soler anyone?).
It was great to see both Jeimer Candelario and Willson Contreras get some quality playing time with a lot of the regulars. I admit, I love both these guys (here’s proof of the love for Jeimer and Willson) and I believe that we ‘ll see one, if not both, at the major league level with the Cubs at some point this season.
Jeimer continues to impress, going 2 for 5, including a bomb shot home run (video below), adding two runs and two RBIs. It will be vastly different if, and when, Jeimer makes it to the majors as compared to Cactus League play. The intensity turns way up, everything speeds up and the competition is much higher night in and night out. That said, I think he’ll be worth looking out for.
Of course, there was A LOT of other highlights in this game. The Cubs won the game 16-14 which included thirty-three combined hits and two errors by each team. It was a sloppy game, it was spring training.
Dexter Fowler had a great game going 3 for 4 with two runs, two RBIs and a walk. He’s been doing a great job this spring and I can’t help but think how impressive that is, and how professional he is, that he’s been able to come out and play like he never even thought about leaving.
Bryant, Almora, Rizzo and Zobrist all had two hits a piece. The best pitching performances of the evening came from Neil Ramirez and Starling Peralta, who each pitched one shut out inning, which, in this game, is worth noting.
And did they start Baseball Tonight during the game?
The Cubs head back home to Sloan Park tomorrow afternoon at 3:05 CDT, where Jon Lester will face the Brewers.